Cliff Lee made Ruben Amaro, Jr. look like the smartest man in the league after his outstanding start tonight. Aside from a 12 pitch walk to former teammate Ryan Garko, Lee was perfect through 5 1/3 innings. For the next 3 2/3 innings Lee wasn’t any worse for the wear, pitching a complete game 4 hitter, allowing one run on a sacrifice fly. Not only was Cliff unbelievably good on the mound, but he showed the batting prowess of someone accustomed to hitting, going 2 for 3 in the game with a run scored, missing a home run by inches.
All in all, Cliff Lee’s Phillies debut was perfect. Nobody could’ve asked for more, and if this is a sign for things to come, I have to ask, "Who needs Roy Halladay?" Not only was Cliff Lee great tonight, but the other player we got in the deal, Ben Francisco, had the best 1 for 4 night that I have ever seen. He hammered the ball in all five of his at bats and got his first RBI as a Phillie, driving in Cliff Lee. If this game was in Philly, Ben Francisco may have had 3 homers tonight with the way he hit the ball.
The Phillies bats were silent for the most part of the game, starting out 0/10 with runners in scoring position. Through 6 innings they led 1-0 on a solo shot by Jayson Werth, but then the hitters got patient and the bats got hot. After two walks, Ryan Howard got hit by a pitch to load the bases, and a walk to Ibanez make it 2-0 Phillies. Jayson Werth hit a single to drive in Utley and Howard, and the Phillies took a 4-0 lead.
The Phillies didn’t look back. Cliff Lee finished the game off with his 3rd complete game in his last 4 starts, and he got the first Phillies complete game since Cole Hamels shut out the Dodgers earlier in the month. The Phillies finish off July 20-7 to bring their record to 59-42!
For more about all things Philly, check out my individual blog, Broad Street Heroes (broadstreetheroes.com)